WORKPLACE SUCCESS / 18 March 20195 Ultra-Effective Ways to Work Smarter, not Harder
Let’s be honest— as a young professional, mornings become a lot more difficult after college. Suddenly, the 8am classes just seem impossible, and you look back at high school wondering how you managed to stay productive eight hours of lectures five days a week. The phrase “I’ll sleep earlier tomorrow” just becomes a repetitive phrase that never happens—and when it does, you’re lying wide awake in bed, tossing and turning.
Don’t let those nocturnal nights take all your energy from you! Whether it’s recovering from a crazy summer or catching up on sleep after an all-nighter of studying, here are 5 tips to help to help any young professional get to be early.
A common mistake people make when they try to adjust their sleep schedule is that they’ll try to go to bed several hours earlier than usual, only to lie wide awake in bed. When your body is already used to a certain schedule, it’ll tend to stick around it. Instead of sleeping hours earlier in a single night, try sleeping 15 minutes earlier every day for a week to ease your body into naturally changing its clock.
Never go to sleep when stimulants or depressants are still present in your system. It takes your body several hours to flush caffeine and alcohol out of your body, even when you may no longer feel its effects. Although you may still be able to fall asleep, the quality of your sleep will be affected and you will not feel as energized the following morning. Check out more ways coffee adversely affects your productivity.
Okay, I’m guilty of this too. You finally manage to get to bed earlier than usual and can’t fall asleep. Next thing you know, you whip out your smart device and open up all your social media sites again. Resist this temptation! Any artificial light disturbs your sleep cycle and keeps your brain active and distracted. It also suppresses your body’s production of melatonin, which aids sleep. Ideally, you should shut down all electronic devices an hour before bedtime. This includes no more falling asleep while watching Netflix.
For those of us who don’t hit the gym every day, this one can seem like the most daunting task of all. Not only is exercise good for your health, but it’ll also help you release built-up stress that may be keeping you awake at night. Furthermore, exercising will help you release some energy so that you will be more tired when going to sleep.
Sure—I’ve been guilty of ordering pizza at 2am before, but that will not aid your sleep! Heavy meals, especially those containing a lot of fat, are difficult for your stomach to digest and may keep you up. Instead, if you’re hungry before bedtime, opt for melatonin-inducing foods such as unsalted nuts, oatmeal, and bananas.
When you do everything in your power to be the most productive that you can be, you can take on the world. To learn about other key factors in any young professional’s career, read this post to help you land a job!
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